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Mac Pro, iMac & Qualcomm: What To Expect From Apple In The Start Of 2019

It is the beginning of a new year, and as usual, the first half of 2019 will be a busy one for Apple and the rest of the technology industry. AppleInsider describes several topics about which you can anticipate hearing more in the coming months.

iMac and Mac Pro

In 2017, Apple added a six-core Xeon configuration and dual AMD G500 GPUs to the 2013 model of the Mac Pro, which was the only significant update to the Mac Pro product line in recent years. A shift is long overdue.

Apple announced at the time of the update that it was “completely rethinking the Mac Pro,” mentioning a new modular design that could be more upgrade-friendly than the current cylindrical model. A new “pro display” was also promised to accompany what Apple’s chief marketing officer, Phil Schiller, described as Apple’s “highest-end, high-throughput desktop system, designed for our most demanding professional customers.”

We’d like Apple to release the Mac Pro early in 2019, but we’re concerned that, similar to the cylindrical Mac Pro, it will be released very late in 2019.

The lengthy development period may have also aided the case for a high-performance system, such as the introduction of a 28-core, 56-thread Intel Xeon processor that would be an excellent fit for the Mac Pro.

Apple introduced new iMac models in 2017 but made no noteworthy additions in 2018. As a result, the iMac lineup could also be subject to modifications. The October event, which was rumored to involve Mac-related changes, centered on a new Mac mini and a new MacBook Air design while leaving the iMac unchanged.

An updated iMac lineup or a redesigned iMac Pro could be introduced alongside the Mac Pro, with the former serving as a more budget-friendly alternative to the expensive professional models.

iPads

The first couple of months is also an ideal time for Apple to release new iPad models. Given that Apple unveiled a revised 9.7-inch model in March, an annual refresh may occur around the same time.

As for what such an iPad event could introduce, it would make sense for Apple to implement similar changes to those seen in the iPad Pro refresh late last year. Face ID, thinner bezels, and compatibility with the second-generation Apple Pencil are all possible additions to the company’s standard consumer tablet.

It might not be the only tablet on the horizon. Chinese reports in December suggested that a fifth-generation iPad mini was in development, making it the first update to the depreciated line of diminutive tablets in more than three years.

While the former is likely due to anticipation of an annual update, the latter is less likely because there have been few other reports about the device, indicating that the ones that have surfaced may be overly speculative.

If Apple produces a new iPad mini, information about it will likely leak over the next few months before its possible release later this quarter.

In litigation with Qualcomm

A company of Apple’s size is likely to end up in court for a variety of reasons, but April will see one of its most significant legal battles in recent years.

Since 2017, Apple and Qualcomm have argued over patent licensing and royalties, with Apple claiming Qualcomm withheld $1 billion in patent license rebates and abused its market position. Qualcomm instead asserts that Apple is attempting to pay less than the fair market value for standard-essential payments, breach of contract, and the theft of trade secrets provided to chip rival Intel, among other allegations.

The legal battle has already resulted in favorable rulings for Qualcomm, including a ban on the sale of certain iPhone models in China, while a German court ruled that Apple violated a Qualcomm patent, potentially paving the way for a Germany-wide ban.

With the addition of a group of Apple assemblers seeking $9 billion in damages from Qualcomm in a related lawsuit, the battle between the iPhone manufacturer and the chip manufacturer has become one that neither side wishes to lose.

Qualcomm has ostensibly suggested that it and Apple are attempting to settle before the potentially costly court appearance, whereas Apple has repeatedly stated that no such negotiations have taken place and is ultimately preparing for a protracted battle.

When it occurs, AppleInsider will cover the court proceedings and the inevitable fallout that will follow.

Privacy or No Privacy

The ongoing conflict between technology companies and governments over privacy and security is another thing that will persist for the foreseeable future. While security agencies such as the FBI want access to data, such as by weakening encryption, Apple and other companies have fought to prevent the introduction of backdoors and similar elements.

In the wake of major consumer data breaches and the Cambridge Analytica scandal involving Facebook, consumer data privacy has become a greater concern than ever before, and lawmakers have taken note.

In November, a subcommittee of the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee disclosed that it was working on a potential bill that would give the Federal Trade Commission the authority to enforce and create consumer data protection regulations applicable to telecommunications companies.

While the bill’s language has not yet been confirmed, it is expected that a bipartisan draft will be completed “early in the session” this year. We do not know how the current shutdown will affect future developments, but we would be surprised if there was no significant progress by June.

CES Is the Imminent Future

In a few days, the first major technology tradeshow of the year will take place. The Consumer Electronics Show is renowned as a venue for product launches by nearly all technology companies eager to display their wares and the latest innovations that may or may not reach consumers later in the year.

Sure, it’s a significant event that deserves notice, but in a world where companies hold their flashy product launches, some may believe that it no longer holds much significance.

While Apple typically does not attend CES, the vast majority of hardware companies that work within the Apple ecosystem are likely to be present with a variety of devices, accessories, and other products.

AppleInsider will, as usual, be present at the event and will report on any announcements made regarding the iPhone, iPad, Mac, HomeKit, and Apple’s other products and services.

This year, hopefully, there will not be a blackout on the exhibition floor.

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The above article was written by the BestTopReviewsOnline team, which consists of some of the most knowledgeable technical experts in the United States. Our team consists of highly regarded writers with vast experience in smartphones, computer components, technology apps, security, and photography, among other fields.

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